No more headache, weed harvesters are here

The silent but immense cost of siltation, weed infestation and sedimentation along the Shire River basin to the country’s power sector is just overwhelming. The current prolonged and incessant power outages may be as a result of a combination of factors. But weeds and severe soil erosion, coupled with resultant sedimentation along the Shire River…

MCC tips Malawi on vibrant power sector

  Building a strong power sector in the country will require continued commitment to action and accountability by government and its partners, an official from Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) has advised. In an interview, MCC practice lead and acting senior director on energy Samuel Kwon said that the ball is in the country’s court to…

The rebirth of nkula a is nigh

A new lease of life is stacking at Nkula A Hydropower Plant, located on the Shire River, about 50 kilometres northwest of the commercial city of Blantyre. Only positive minds full to brim with optimism are currently counting down a few months remaining for the country’s oldest power plant to embrace a total renaissance. Those that…

Putting inflation drop into perspective

It is obvious that at the time of writing this piece, both Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) and the Treasury, who are custodians of monetary and fiscal policies, respectively, are over the moon with this talk in town about Malawi’s regained single digit inflation. Over the past six years, authorities have been battling double-digit inflation—the…

Egenco sees light at the end of tunnel

Electricity Generation Company (Egenco) Malawi Limited has forecast a brighter future for power sector in the medium to the long-term, thanks to the Power Sector Reform Project (PSRP). The project is being implemented by the Malawi Government with funding from the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC). Egenco, a company created following unbundling Electricity Supply Corporation of…

Report cautiously on MCC Compact—Minister

Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Bright Msaka has asked the media to carefully report on the on-going implementation of the $350 million energy project by Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) that seeks to revitalise the energy sector. Msaka said this in Lilongwe on Friday when he addressed news editors from various media houses in…

Be consistent on policies, urges FUM

Farmers Union of Malawi (FUM), a representative body of farmers, has urged government to ensure consistency in the implementation of the National Agriculture Policy (NAP) and the National Irrigation Policy (NIP). The two polices were launched last week in Lilongwe by President Peter Mutharika. FUM chief executive officer Prince Kapondamgaga while describing the two policies…

FUM hosts annual congress

Farmers Union of Malawi (FUM) is set to hold its National Farmers’ Policy Conference in Lilongwe tomorrow which will precede its 12th Annual Congress. The two events, scheduled for Bingu International Conference Centre (Bicc), will be convened under the theme Farming for Markets and Development: Partnerships for increased Farmer Productivity, Market Access and Incomes. Over…

Govt hails Zomba  irrigation initiative

  Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development George Chaponda has hailed Farmers Union of Malawi (FUM) for supporting farmers under Ntchera Irrigation Scheme in Zomba using solar powered irrigation. Chaponda said this on Tuesday when he visited the scheme situated along the Shire River in Masaula Extension Planning Area (EPA), Traditional Authority Mulumbe (T/A)…

Malawi farmers learn from Zambian counterparts

  Twenty two farmers from Malawi were last week in Zambia for a five-day study tour where they engaged various farmer groups and other value chain players.  The team, which arrived back on Friday, comprised district farmers union (DFU) leaders from the country’s 22 districts. The Malawi delegation, led by officials from Farmers Union of…

The whole world is still in a state of awe over the recent leakage of ‘Panama Papers,’ a set  of leaked confidential documents exposing how offshore companies are used by the global elite to conceal the ownership and control of assets and property worth billions. The Panama papers—co-authored by two journalists, Frederick Obermaier and Bastian…

Government clarifies on electricity deals with IPPs

Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining has said discussions are on-going between the ministry and Independent Power Producers (IPPs) following the signing of memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the IPPs and Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) on Term Sheets – a prelude to signing of Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs). The ministry’s statement contradicts…

World Bank queries RBM monetary policy

The World Bank has questioned Reserve Bank of Malawi’s (RBM) implementation of monetary policy, observing that the policy appears to be losing its effectiveness. But RBM spokesperson Mbane Ngwira in an interview on Wednesday expressed surprise at Bretton Woods institution’s observation, wondering why it should expect monetary policy to be effective when the institution and…

Yawning gap between rich, poor in Malawi

Monica Moyo, from Kawale Village, Traditional Authority (T/A) Mabulabo in Mzimba District cannot escape to be classified in any bracket definition of a poor person. Although there are myriad definitions of who the poor are, Moyo fits into every definition judging by her life and that of her household. She lives around Kanyika Mine, which…

Malawi to benefit from global oil price drop

  Malawi is expected to continue benefiting from tumbling global crude oil price in 2016 as the situation will likely result into stability and possibly subsequent reduction in the local pump prices. Department of Energy Affairs spokesperson Joseph Kalowekamo expressed the optimism in an interview yesterday when asked to react to a latest Commodity Markets…

Mejn faults government on subsidy

Malawi Economic Justice Network (Mejn) has faulted government over continued implementation of Decent and Affordable Housing Subsidy Programme (Dahsp), popularly known as Malata and Cement Subsidy, saying its costs do not make economic sense. But Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development Atupele Muluzi on Wednesday expressed surprise at Mejn’s stance on the programme, questioning…

‘Politics is passport to riches in Malawi’

  DUMBANI MZALE caught up with DESMOND BIKOKO, councillor for Chigoneka Ward in Lilongwe, who recently reported some directors and senior managers at Lilongwe City Council to the Anti- Corruption Bureau (ACB) for sharing illegal allowances. Excerpts: Q1 How do you look at the current political situation? A1 The country seems to be in a…

Uranium price pick-up holds key to kayelekera mine

  Dual-listed miner, Paladin Energy Limited is still keeping its fingers crossed to see spot uranium prices on the global market rebound to profitable levels for it to resume uranium production at Kayelekera Uranium Mine (KM) in Karonga. The company, through its subsidiary Paladin (Africa) Limited, stopped uranium production at Malawi’s largest investment venture two…

Chuka reflects on kwacha fall in 2015

  Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) Governor Charles Chuka has said the fluctuation of the kwacha in 2015 against major international currencies, particularly the dollar, was worse compared to the experience the year before. The governor—in the third monetary policy statement released on Friday—said the situation was exacerbated by panic buying of foreign exchange by…

Desperately queuing for water in Area 25

  Taps in Area 25 in Lilongwe have run dry for almost three days, prompting residents to scramble for available water in reservoirs such as boreholes. The situation worsened on Sunday and saw a mobile water bowser from Lilongwe Water Board (LWB) distributing water to the most affected residents. In the picture, desperate residents queue…